Presented by Irith Bloom
CEUs: PPAB 2, CCPDT 2, IAABC 2
Scientific research indicates that control over one’s environment is a strong reinforcer. Unfortunately, many of our pets have almost no control over their environment, and can make few, if any, significant choices. Humans select what animals eat, specify which objects are appropriate toys, decide when and where an animal can go outside, and essentially control every aspect of the animal’s life. This pervasive lack of choice can result in increased stress, which often leads to a variety of undesired behaviors.
Fortunately, there is a better way. This presentation will highlight tools you can use to increase choice in an animal’s life, ranging from training techniques that give animals more control, to practical ways to create choice-rich environments, to tips on empowering animals to make choices that work both for them and for their humans. The presentation will also address why choice is especially critical when dealing with aggressive, fearful, and reactive behavior, and provide specific examples for how to increase choice in those types of situations.
Irith Bloom has been training animals since the 1980s, and has worked with everything from chickens, rabbits, parrots, and cats to dogs and horses – not to mention humans. A biologist by training, Irith is fascinated by the science of learning, and loves taking part in conferences and seminars.
Irith is faculty at the Victoria Stilwell Dog Training Academy. She is also a Certified Professional Dog Trainer - Knowledge & Skills Assessed (CPDT-KSA), a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC), a Victoria Stilwell Positively Dog Trainer (VSPDT), a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA CTP), and a Certified Behavior Adjustment Training Instructor (CBATI), as well as being certified in TAGteach, a positive reinforcement method for coaching humans.
Irith regularly presents at conferences, and has given seminars as far away as Japan. She has written numerous articles for online outlets. She has also been published in print in Everydog magazine, as well as The Association of Professional Dog Trainer’s Chronicle of the Dog and the recently released book “Better Together: The Collected Wisdom of Dog Trainers.”
Irith volunteers with National English Shepherd Rescue, and is on the Steering Committee of the Los Angeles County 2020 Healthy Pets Healthy Families Coalition, a One Health initiative aimed at improving the health and well-being of people and their pets throughout Los Angeles County.
Irith is the owner of The Sophisticated Dog, LLC, a pet training company based in Los Angeles. She shares her home with a rescued English Shepherd named Franklin and her husband Aaron (not a rescue).